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Tears and Laughter – Remembering Marc Pourner






In the dark, cold night, a table stood lined with candles and photos of the smiling young man whose life journey ended abruptly when he was brutally murdered last week. The candlelight vigil in memory of murder victim Marc Pourner was held Wednesday night near Firetower Road and FM 1485, the area where he and his burned pickup were found. The gathering came just hours after the public learned his alleged killer, 22-year-old David James Brown, was arrested in Lafayette, Indiana. Brown is charged with Capital Murder and will be extradited to Texas.

Dozens of people held candles as they reminisced through tears and laughter. Mark Pourner, Marc’s father, somehow found the strength to take the lead, as he stood by the makeshift memorial made up of photos from Marc’s Facebook page. Marc may not have been physically present, but his spirit was certainly there. The personality and sense of humor that would not allow him to go unnoticed in life were shown through his family and friends, and through the same photos he had chosen to share with the world online. One had a printed caption that read, “Don’t hate me because I’m beautiful”.

Mark Pourner thanked those who helped find his son’s body, and said he and his wife were grateful they would not be one of the many families whose missing loved ones are never found.

When Mark Pourner spoke of his son, his words and the words of others who knew Marc best, painted a picture that made even those who never had a chance to know Marc feel they lost something.

“Marc was a wonderful kid,” Pourner said, “But he was a force of nature – We always thought of him as unrestrainable.”

Marc’s friend, Patrick, said “All he did was laugh. Since day one, all he did was laugh.”

Mark Pourner said the vigil was the idea of Marc’s friend and former roommate, Brandon, who had also been the person that accompanied him to the site where his son died. Pourner said he simply had to see the spot where it happened, to try and “wrap his head around it,” as they say.

“It’s no place to leave anyone, alive or dead,” Pourner said.

Brandon said he met Marc after he and another close friend got out of the military in 2009. The three lived together in Dobbin, a quiet little community. As Brandon describes that time, it sounds as though Marc did his part to change the “quiet” part.

“If there was no noise, Marc would make the loudest noise of everybody,” Brandon said smiling. “He would definitely make a scene. He was definitely the person to look at.”

“He’s definitely a firecracker,” Brandon said. Mark Pourner then added, “That’s one thing Marc would give for free was his opinion.”

Like everyone who would speak at the vigil, Brandon was devastated, but he had to laugh at almost every thought or memory of his vivacious friend.

Marc was like family to him, and was even godfather to Brandon’s son. They last saw one another a couple of weeks ago, he said, but even when they did not see one another for a long time, it would seem as though no time had passed at all. When Brandon learned Marc was gone, he got chills, he said. He could not believe it.

Corey was another friend of Marc’s, who knew him from high school and was the third Dobbin roommate. When he tried to talk about Marc, Corey became almost too choked up to speak.

“He’ll always be my brother. He’ll always be right here,” he said, gesturing toward his heart.

Marc was openly gay, and Corey said Marc “came out” to him before Corey entered the military.

That was significant because, although by all accounts Marc had become very comfortable with himself and had many who loved and accepted him, his sister said he was bullied when he was younger. Molly also joked that hers and Mark’s personalities clashed because “he was always loud and hyper.” However, Molly said, “That’s what made Marc…Marc.”

She said their mom used to tell a particular story in which she always mixed up her two children, saying she and Molly went to a store to buy some nice sunglasses.

“I’d say, no, mom. That was your other daughter, and she’d say, oh sorry,” Molly said.

Mark Pourner chimed in, “And she was right!”

“Marc was who he was, and he was so true to it,” Molly said. “I had no idea how giving he was until hearing from everyone.”

“I just hope that carries on, how giving and loving he was, and how not afraid to be different he was,” she said. “It wasn’t even being gay. It wasn’t even that, because even before he talked about that, he was always different.”

“He was always Marc,” Molly said.

Another young woman emerged to share her thoughts, saying Marc helped her through some “really low times” in her life, and taught her the importance of just “being who you are.”

A lady also stepped forward who never knew Marc in life, but said when she was unable to sleep last week, she learned he was missing and wanted to help. She is a volunteer with three years’ experience in helping private investigators search for missing people. Like Mark Pourner, she said she was thankful Marc was quickly found. The woman took the opportunity to encourage others to share and help any time they see someone is missing.

“Somebody knows something,” she said. “That’s always our motto. Somebody knows something. Share those pictures and thank God Marc was found.”

Jolena Pourner, Marc’s mom, asked everyone to join in singing “You are my Sunshine” Everyone in attendance sang the well-known chorus and then stopped, but Jolena kept singing all alone. Her voice was only a little shaky, as she bravely sang the next verse. Then, everyone again joined in for the chorus.

After the song, Mark Pourner called forward Sgt. Kendrick of the Montgomery County Sheriff’s Office. The sergeant was a point of contact for the family while Marc was missing, and also the officer who physically found Marc and his truck. Sgt. Kendrick then stayed on the scene the rest of the night.

“I’m eternally grateful for your service, sir,” Mark Pourner said.

“Thank you for finding my boy so fast,” said Jolena Pourner.

Marc Pourner’s family learned he was missing around 1 p.m. Friday, November 13. MCSO Investigators quickly identified Brown as a suspect, but soon learned he fled to Indiana where he has lived for a few years and also spent some time in jail for a variety of crimes including battery. When the MCSO received information Brown might be at a residence in Tippecanoe County (Indiana), they contacted the Tippecanoe County Sheriff’s Office for assistance. The TCSO located that residence and watched it until they saw Brown leave. Deputies followed him to a CVS in Delphi, Indiana where they took him into custody without incident.

As of this writing, investigators have not disclosed what they believe to be Brown’s motive for allegedly murdering Marc Pourner. The two men knew one another, and many have suggested the murder was a “hate crime,” but that has not been confirmed.

Because Brown is charged with a capital offense, he will be eligible for the death penalty if convicted, and if the Montgomery County District Attorney’s Office chooses to seek it.




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